WICHITA FALLS, Texas (TNN) - *From Wichita County Judge Woody Gossom*
ORDER DECLARING A LOCAL STATE OF DISASTER FOR WICHITA COUNTY, TEXAS
WHEREAS, the County of Wichita, Texas, due to severe winter weather conditions, is experiencing the occurrence of imminent threat of widespread and severe damage, injury, and/or loss of life and property resulting from one or more of the delineated events identified in Texas Government Code Section 418.004(1); and
WHEREAS, Texas Government Code Section 418.004(1) defines disaster to be the “occurrence or imminent threat of widespread or severe damage, injury, or loss of life or property resulting from any natural or man-made cause, including fire, flood, earthquake, wind, storm, wave action, oil spill or other water contamination, volcanic activity, epidemic, air contamination, blight, drought, infestation, explosion, riot, hostile military or paramilitary action, extreme heat, cybersecurity event, other public calamity requiring emergency action, or energy emergency”; and
WHEREAS, the County Judge of Wichita County has determined from statements and information provided by Wichita County Emergency Management personnel and other emergency services agencies serving Wichita County, Texas, that extraordinary measures must be taken to alleviate and prevent the suffering of people and to protect or rehabilitate property; and
WHEREAS, due to the disaster conditions as cited herein, the County Judge of Wichita County, Texas must protect the health, safety and welfare of the County’s citizens;
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT DECLARED and ORDERED as follows, pursuant to the authority granted in the Texas Disaster Act of Chapter 418 of the Texas Government Code:
- That a local state of disaster is hereby declared for Wichita County pursuant to Section 418.108(a) of the Texas Government Code;
- Pursuant to the authority granted under the laws of the State of Texas, Wichita County may take all legal actions necessary to protect the health of persons in Wichita County, Texas;
- Pursuant to Section 418.108(d) of the Texas Government Code, this Declaration and Order activates the recovery and rehabilitation aspects of the Wichita County Emergency Management Plan and authorizes the furnishing of aid and assistance under this Declaration and Order. The preparedness and response aspects of the Wichita County Emergency Management Plan are hereby activated and shall take effect immediately based upon this Declaration and Order;
- Pursuant to Section 418.108(b) of the Texas Government Code, the state of local disaster shall continue for a period of not more than seven (7) days from the date of this Declaration and Order unless continued or renewed by the Commissioners Court of Wichita County, Texas;
- Pursuant to Section 418.108(c) of the Texas Government Code, this Declaration and Order shall be given prompt and general publicity and shall be filed promptly with the Wichita County County Clerk;
- A violation of this Declaration and Order shall be a criminal offense punishable by a fine that does not exceed $1,000.00 or confinement in jail for a term not to exceed 180 days, as authorized by Section 418.173 of the Texas Government Code;
- In the event that conditions improve between the date of adoption and the end of the effective date of this Declaration and Order, the County Judge shall reevaluate this Declaration and Order at that time.
This Declaration and Order is adopted this 16th day of February 2021, at 1:00 p.m., effective immediately.
Woodrow W. Gossom, Jr.
Wichita County County Judge